If your providers and clinical teams are not on board, aligned and engaged with your telehealth program, you’ve got a problem. The good news is that the ability to increase provider engagement with telehealth is within your power. Here are three tips to help providers understand, embrace and advance your virtual care program.
1) Share the vision.
Provider engagement starts with being clear about where your organization is going and how telehealth will help you get there. Share the reasons why telehealth is an important gateway to your future, from meeting patient expectations to participating in value-based contracts. Make it clear how providers contribute and what’s in it for them.
2) Share the metrics you are watching.
Staff needs to know that you are expecting telehealth to generate economic and quality improvements to the operation. Let them know you are assessing metrics regularly, and share the data so they can see their successes. For instance, in addition to seeing telehealth utilization by the provider, you may also wish to track:
- Compare the utilization of telehealth vs telephonic modes, and their reimbursement payments
- Access and speed to care
- How many same-day or urgent visits would otherwise have gone to an urgent care center?
- Look for a change in no-shows; see how often it was possible to convert a missed in-person appointment to a virtual appointment within 24-48 hours
- Additional services for patients
- How many, and which, medically necessary visits and screenings were added as a result of remote patient monitoring alerts or data analysis?
- Care outcomes
- Measure reduced A1C, weight loss, stabilized blood pressure, therapeutic improvement as a result of increased use of telehealth to “touch” the patient
3) Shorten the learning curve.
The faster your team becomes competent and confident with the telehealth technology and systems, the better.
- Find champions for issues large and small who can educate, reassure and encourage others to overcome a barrier or embrace an opportunity
- Make it safe to experiment, share struggles and ask for help
- Celebrate small as well as large wins, so people see what others have done well
- Address knowledge gaps with remedial training on technology, because some folks may need to start with Zoom training
- Plan and make time for practice
- Address fear of chaos or complexity by providing clear workflows and roles
- Encourage suggestions and implement that ones that make things simpler, easier or faster for clinical teams
If you do these things, your leadership will increase the resilience, patience and engagement of your telehealth team.
Need some help getting your providers engaged and on board with telehealth? It’s what we do. Contact us at 1-888-458-1275 to start the conversation about physician engagement.